How to serve
Perceived as an essential part of Slavic identity, vodka as we know it today was strongly influenced by the technological progress of the industrial revolution. Consumed in Eastern Europe since the 15th century, it was not until the 1930s that it entered the wider world as a ‘table spirit’, following widespread use of the column still.
Whether it is consumed neat or in the form of a cocktail, vodka continues to attract a young, sophisticated clientele. In parallel to its success as a refined luxury product, it is also much appreciated for its more functional role as an excellent cocktail base, with a soft, smooth texture. Ultimately vodka only has one limiting factor: its relatively neutral aromatic range, which is especially true of western and American vodkas.
Western consumers have yet to embrace the ‘Russian style’ shot of neat vodka enjoyed during a meal. However, the emergence in Poland and other countries of flavoured vodkas, produced by simple distillation, could be the key to attracting a new clientele.